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Let me start by saying this topic isn’t the most exciting but is very important. We’re talking about loss control inspections, what to expect and how to prepare.

Also known as a risk control inspection, this is an in-depth survey of your facility and risk management activities, conducted by your insurance company. Most importantly, this is a valuable service for you because it helps identify different risk control and safety hazards.

What is a risk / loss control inspection?

First off, you might be asking, “What is loss control?” We’re talking about steps, practices and procedures that organizations take to reduce the risk of accidents or insurance claims.

Simply put, a loss control inspection is a survey of your property and safety operations you have in place to reduce the chance of an accident. The goal is to find possible risks and correct them before any accidents take place.

Don’t worry though! Look at this as an opportunity for you to learn about different commercial risks and ask questions. This should not be seen as a bad thing. The result is a safer church or non-profit for your employees, volunteers, and those you serve.

What can I do to prepare for a loss control inspection?

We ask that you don’t avoid the visit or the consultant’s call. The inspection is an important part of the insurance underwriting process, especially for new policies.

Another reason might be if you have an insurance claims history or have certain liability insurance coverage like sexual misconduct or employment practices liability. Make yourself available; it’s important to be responsive and take the visit seriously.

To help you prepare, Brotherhood Mutual Insurance Company has an excellent library of resources and checklists available to help keep your facilities ready. You can easily review specific areas within your church or non-profit operations using checklists like these:

  1. Fire Safety Checklist
  2. Building Security Checklist
  3. Cold Weather Maintenance Checklist
  4. Employment Practices Checklist
  5. Nursery Safety Checklist
  6. Preventing Slip and Fall Accidents
  7. Water Damage Prevention
  8. You can visit Brotherhood Mutual Insurance Company to see additional checklists for your organization.

What can you expect during the inspection?

You’ll receive a phone call from a loss control consultant wanting to setup an opportunity to visit. If you’re at all concerned by this, don’t hesitate to call your insurance agent. They can provide you with more details on why the inspection is needed and who should be contacting you.

You can plan for the entire inspection to take approximately one to two hours, depending on the size of your property. Make sure the right people are available to answer questions about your organization’s work, as well as lead a tour of your property.

Take this opportunity to ask questions, as the consultant will have questions and suggestions of their own. 

Here are some six common exposures your risk consultant might find:
  1. Trip hazards like uneven sidewalks or stairs in disrepair
  2. Exit and emergency lighting not working properly
  3. Missing handrailing on stairs
  4. Out of date fire extinguishers
  5. Roof conditions, like missing shingles or over-due roof replacement
  6. General maintenance concerns like peeling paint, water on the basement floor, or other out of date inspections like a boiler

What do I do with the loss control recommendations?

After the site survey, you will receive your report in two to four weeks. Remember, this is an opportunity to reduce risks and make things safer within your church or non-profit. As for the report, you will see its divided into three levels of recommendations:

Loss Control Inspection Recommendation

  1. Severe – These findings need to be addressed within 30 days or have a plan submitted with an expected completion date.
  2. Necessary – These findings need to be addressed within 90 days or have a plan submitted with an expected completion date.
  3. Advisable – These are suggestions made based on best practices and are not required to complete but are highly recommended.

What happens if you ignore the recommendations?

This always depends, but worst-case scenario is your insurance coverage could be cancelled by the insurance company. It is important to take the risk control solutions seriously as they can have a significant positive or negative impact on your insurance premium.

Where can you get help with loss control or risk management questions?

We tell each client to start with us, the insurance agent, as one of our services is to support you when it comes to your commercial insurance and risk management solutions.

As we wrap up, you might consider proactively arranging of a loss control inspection of your building if it’s been used less or even vacant as a result of the pandemic. This will ensure a in-depth survey of your property is conducted and provide an opportunity for proactive risk management controls.

About the Author: Anton Thornquist
Anton Thornquist is the owner of CTG Insurance. Anton purchased CTG from his grandfather Ralph, and expanded the company to begin covering nonprofit organizations of all sizes and causes, as well as human services organizations. Anton saw how these sectors were underserved much like churches were back when the company was founded, so now CTG seeks to help even more kinds of organizations with their important work.

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